Author: Susan Ito
Susan Ito is a struggling college student, a young adult on the cusp of parental independence, when she meets her birth mother for the first time. Instead of launching into adulthood, she finds herself entangled in longing for this new kind of mother love where she sees her own self, mirrored in mysterious and tantalizing ways. At the same time that she explores the genetic threads that bind her to this stranger, she works as the “mouse girl,” caring for hundreds of experimental mice in a medical research laboratory. The relationship with her birth mother is as tormented as any partially requited love story: waiting by the phone, haunting the mailbox, and pacing the floor wondering about a promised visit that may or may not happen. Meanwhile, she tracks the intricate family trees of the hordes of squeaky rodents in her care. Memoirist, fiction writer, and solo performer Susan Ito explores themes of family, identity, DNA, and love in this unique and poignant story.